INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY AND THREATS TO SECURITY IN NIGERIA: CHALLENGES FOR PUBLIC LAW

Information Technology has enhanced productivity but has also increased the rate of criminal activities that are not limited by boundaries or territory. Conversely, Communications technologies have enhanced the capacity of law enforcement and governments to conduct surveillance, intercept and collate data. This raises concern about unwarranted intrusions into the privacy of individuals, companies and other entities and also the extent to which the law shields private interests. Another concern borders on safeguards against tampering with digital evidence.
We examine the adequacy of the criminal justice legal framework in Nigeria in relation to IT crimes, (including crimes assisted by IT) as well as constitutional and evidential thresholds observed by the courts. We also propose that strong institutional safeguards and independent judiciary are necessary requirements for effective supervision of enforcement powers and protection of the public interest.